Aah, tinned tomato soup. Or, more specifically; aah, Heinz Cream of Tomato Soup. Everyone loves cream of tomato soup, don’t they? I have it when I’m ill, when I’m hungover and it was all I could face when my house got burgled a few years ago (well, soup and alcohol, anyway). In fact, it’s more of a comfort blanket than a soup, really. I suspect it’s because I don’t see tomato soup as an ‘everyday’ soup, I don’t make homemade tomato soup very often and, if I do, it’s usually ‘tomato and something’, rather than just tomato.
But I had a few tins of chopped tomatoes taking up room on the kitchen worktop, so I decided I’d make a homemade tomato soup. I wasn’t expecting it to turn out like Heinz because mine would be a vegan version and therefore it wouldn’t contain any cream. I’d thought about thickening it with cashews but, thanks to my Froothie Optimum G2.1 high powered blender, it turned out beautifully creamy and smooth without needing to add any thickeners (I know it doesn’t look silky smooth in the photo but, trust me – it is).
You could, for a creamier taste, replace half the stock with soya milk (or dairy milk if you’re not fussed about it being vegan), but I don’t really think it’s necessary and I only swirled on a bit of soya milk for a prettier photo.
A cheap, creamy, comforting bowl of soup; even if you don’t need comforting.
A cheap, creamy, comforting bowl of vegan tomato soup
Author: Cathy @ Planet Veggie
Recipe type: Soup
1 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 400g cans chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato puree
500ml vegan stock
A few basil leaves, torn
salt and pepper
Heat the oil in a large saucepan
Add the onion and garlic and fry for about 5 minutes, until soft
Add the tinned tomatoes, tomato puree and stock, then season to taste with the salt and pepper
Stir through and simmer for 10 minutes
Add the basil, stir through and transfer to a blender and blend until smooth
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This morning, I opened the freezer to get some frozen fruit to make myself a nice healthy smoothie. Then I saw the crumpets… but – get me and my steely resolve – I resisted them, telling myself I’d have the crumpets for lunch instead.
I don’t know what happened but, instead of toasting the crumpets at lunchtime, I made some spinach and tomato soup. Not really the same thing, is it? Ho hum.
I made this vegan soup in my soup maker but if you’re going to make it on the hob, then fry the onion and garlic for a few minutes, add the rest of the ingredients, simmer for 20 minutes or so, then blend.
You can use any stock you like but I made my own ‘instant chicken’less bouillon powder’ from the recipe on the Gentle Chef website.
It occurred to me recently that I’ve been making a lot of one-pot meals, for example curries and pasta. Don’t get me wrong, I love curries and pasta but a) they don’t photograph well (at least not when I take a photo of them, anyway) so I end up not putting them on the blog and; b) sometimes I just want something a bit more traditional. And what could be more traditional than a pie?
I haven’t been completely honest here because, although it’s true I fancied something that wasn’t curry or pasta, my main motivation for making something different to curry or pasta was wanting to use up the tin of butter beans I’d found in the cupboard.
Rose Elliot has written a whole cookery book based on beans – The Bean Book – so I had a look in there and saw her bean and leek pie. Knowing The Meat Eater likes a) butter beans and; b) leeks, I knew he’d give it the thumbs up (or at the very least, an appreciative grunt).
I used Flora in this pie but it could be easily veganised by using a dairy-free spread such as Pure or Vitalite.